Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Four of six missionaries have talks and they all forgot?

There's a book for that! Disregard the fact that you all remembered
just before sacrament meeting starts, just gather around and get some
inspiration! Afterwards the first counselor complemented us all on
being so prepared and sharing way cool scriptures. He actually was
pretty stoked. The Book would be the Book of Brooksby, in case it
wasn't obvious haha

Heyo, peoples of the earth!

There were no questions this week, but that's okay! We need the bad to
comprehend the good, right?

We went to a firework show on Saturday with our 82 year old
investigator and it was pretty fun, but there was a bit of unfortunate
planning that had us walking around much longer than we had planned,
although we met a random German guy that was pretty cool.

Random Story Time!
Elder Parks had mentioned several times a rice desert thingy he wanted
to make and he told me the ingredients several times, but for some
reason he didn't get around to making it until last night. He pulled
out the bowels, threw in some rice, poured milk over it and mixed in
some sugar, then topped it off with some cinnamon and said "Here is
Horchata!", and I didn't have any idea what it was until he started
mixing it around and I was just like "Wait, I know what this is... It
can't be! Is this rice cereal?!? I used to eat this almost every day
with my family!" I had completely forgotten all about it, but my
family used to call it rice cereal. The only thing we did differently
was that we would put in butter, too. It was crazy how I forgot
something like that.

Okay, this next bit is really logical sounding and just a bit
confusing. I copied it almost word for word out of my journal and my
journal is confusing, but I thought that if there's anyone out there
that enjoys math, they might need some help in this fashion, right?
For those who don't understand math too well, but still want to
understand, the "value" or numbers basically mean your enthusiasm or

One of my favorite things that I've learned out here is that
relationships are like equations; if you are both -1 and -1 then it

just comes out to -2 and lowers both of your values and you both
become -2, then -6, -12, etc..., but if you are +1 but your companion
is -2, the equation still comes out at -1, so what most people will do
to solve the problem, something I would do, would be to point out to
them that it's a negative equation because of their influence, which
just gets people defensive and making excuses(And really is just
asking them to be the one to improve because you aren't willing to),
so the truly best thing to do is to make yourself a +3, so after that
the equation will come out to be a +1 and your companion will become a
-1, and if you keep up your +3 then the total is +2 and your companion
will become a +1, and so on and so forth. You just need the strength
to maintain yourself.

Even though I've come to understand that, sometimes I let myself lose
value in the equation, not that that means that my companion is an
excessively negative number either! The situation is also part of the
equation, but the way you change the value of that is to change your
perspective of the situation, which in turn changes your value, which
changes your companion's value and both of you together can then
effectively change your circumstances.
Even as early as this morning I've failed to live up to that
awareness. We set some goals to improve our relationship. My companion
pointed out, as people often do, a way I was being a negative in an
activity that we frequently do, and so I also behaved in a way that
people normally do and excused my negative by pointing out his
negatives in that same activity, and only later did I comprehend that
he was asking me to provide that positive for him so that he could
also improve.

We ourselves should always be willing to admit that, while we may not
be causing the problem, we may and probably actually are at least
contributing to it. It's the times that you fail to be your best self
that you truly fail. Lucky for us on this earth, we can get up every
time we fall, because we have been given the means to do so.
I hope to always do my best to do my very best, and that includes
finding better bests.

Thanks for reading! Peace!
Younger Elder Brooksby

Monday, August 18, 2014

Joseph Smith was 14 years old when he saw God!

Little member kid says to one of his older sisters "You'll get to meet
him in another 3 years!"

Heyo, peoples!

I'm making this short 'cuz I only have about 10 minutes to write...

Weekly Questions!

How am I doing?
Doing awesome! Always awesome!

How was my week?
Pretty uneventful! We wad a 6 hour long weekly planning session, and
that wasn't even close to the longest I've had!

How are the members here?
They are pretty cool. I don't know any of them too well yet... but
I'll get there!

Yeah, not a ton of shtufts that happened this week... We did visit one
of our PI's and he said that Japan really needs religion and, while he
thinks Buddhism is way complicated, he thinks it would be pretty
simple to be Christian, which is pretty cool.

Random Story Time!
A bit of random conversation that people who don't speak or understand
Japanese would not get in the slightest: "You're missing a stroke,
Elder Parks. It's a rice paddy, not a sun."

Sorry it's short, but we gotta go!

Loves to you all!
Younger Elder Brooksby

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

I bought my companion a 200$, 100% wool European suit.

But I bought it for 10$ at a tiny store next to our apartment. We
found a  50% discount rack outside the store and we were like "Hey,
cheap stuff!", then Elder Parks pulled one out and tried it on and we
were like "Hey, way expensive/nice-looking cheap stuff!" and then we
saw the price tag was 20$ and we were like "Hey, way
expensive/nice-looking free stuff!", then Elder Parks was examining it
afterwards 'cuz he is really into suits (pun not intended.) and he was
like "Hey, way nice-looking, 100% wool, 200$ European suit for free!".
It was a nice find and it is actually is almost perfect condition.

Heyo, peoples!

Weekly Questions!

Would I rather live on the beach, or in a house by a lake?
By a lake if it's in a forest. That was a dream location of mine when
I was a kid, but then I grew up and realized I enjoy a desert so much
more haha

Would I rather live in city or country?
City for sure! I did get similar questions last week, but sadly my
previous zone leader had some mail from over a month ago that he
forgot to give me, so I'm answering those questions too.

Would I rather have a cat or a dog?
Well, I like puppies better than dogs, and I like cats better than
kittens, but at the same time one of my bucket list items is to
randomly get a puppy when I have time, a car, and a "Free Puppies!"
sign, so I'll prolly do that first, than maybe one day I'll do the
same with a cat.

Would I rather marry a girl who can cook or who can organize well?
That is an excellent question! I asked my companion which he would
prefer, and he's all about the cooking, but I think I would much
rather have an organized wife. To me that shows a bit more of a mental
focus and I would imagine she would also tend to be more mentally
organized, plus I think I would be way fun to go to a cooking class
with my wife for a date or something!

Do they have grills in Japan like they do in Korea(Aka. Korean Barbeque)?
Yeah, I dunno if it's exactly the same, but we do have it here. It's
one of my favorites, but it is also quite expensive, so it's not a
food frequently eaten by missionaries.

What's my favorite dinosaur?
Hmmm... I would say something all rare or something fancy, but I would
prolly say just a plain Allosaurus. A massively large raptor,
basically fast enough yet big enough to not have a problem with most
things, but they still had to be skilled and smart as well, in order
to survive.

Is my favorite food, American, Mexican or Japanese?
We are actually sitting in line to go eat at a place called La Salsa,
but yeah, generally, if I'm in America I prefer Japanese food, but
having been in Japan for so long, there are some American foods I
would love to eat, and Mexican food is good whenever!

Where is my favorite place to be?
At home, wherever that is. Sometimes I have many homes, sometimes only
one or two, but wherever I can call home and be accepted as an
imperfect being with desires to improve, that is the place I want to

What am I thinking of as possible future careers?
Well, there are a ton of things that I really like and feel like I
could be good at, but a few things I've thought of are a pilot,
foreclosure tracker, architect, fashion designer(weird, I know, don't
judge haha), director of either plays or movies, set designer, drummer
in a band, artist, working for Nexon as a GM, etc. etc. the list is
pretty long. I figure I'll just get home and look at the list of
colleges, pick one, look at the list of classes, choose some and learn

So you may have heard a bit from me or my stories about how I am very
small. Sister Wada notices it too, so she would always ask me if I was
eating and would ask me how much I weigh, and unfortunately I have
lost two or three pounds recently, so when we had interviews with
president this past Tuesday I had to report that I had lost weight,
and now I have been told, word-for-word from Sister Wada "Elder
Brooksby, I give you permission to eat eight meals a day!", or
basically have been ordered to do so. It was kinda funny 'cuz when I
mentioned it to the sisters in our area afterwards Sister Brown asked
"Wait, are you anorexic?" and I thought that was way funny and kinda
laughed, but then I told her "Hey, I eat just as much as everyone
else, I am just too awesome to be able to run off of the nutrients
that are regularly required for a human being!". That reply prolly
wasn't word for word, but you get the idea, ne? Now we don't run off
of the regular meal schedule for food, we run off what we call the
"PHT", or the Parks Hunger Timer; when Elder Parks is hungry, we eat.

Random Story Time!
One night all six elders for some reason randomly ended up at the
church at the same time, which was kinda weird, but anyways, I noticed
I had an email from Salt Lake City about our missionary funds, so I
thought "Yay! I can see exactly how dangerous this next couple of
weeks is going to be!" and I opened it. Several minutes later, Elder
Parberry was on the phone with Elder Etchu, the elder in the mission
home in charge of money relating to missionaries. In very broken
Japanese(so broken it is painful to hear, but hey, he's trying), this
is what we heard as he explained the problem: "Elder Etchu, we have a
really big problem... We have lots of money." "Yeah, we have lots of
money and we wanted to know where it came from." "I don't know! Elder
Brooksby told me to call you!" "Alright, then, I will call Elder
Yamashita... Thanks, Elder Etchu."
Then he called Elder Yamashita, the senior elder in the mission home
in charge of money relating to Salt Lake and the missionaries, and
told him in English(thank goodness) the problem, which was simply that
for some reason the four of us that had opened new apartments had
gotten as much as we do each month in our accounts several weeks
early, which was way cool, but my last companion had had something
similar happen to him and it had ended up being the next months money,
just sent early for some reason, so we wanted to see what was up. Long
story short, we have been told not to touch it for now while Elder
Yamashita investigates, but it was still quite an entertaining event.

Well, I think that's about it... Sorry this email is a bit late! We
ended up taking longer than I thought we would and ended up having to
run home, which was annoying, but ah well, missionary life, ne?

Loves to you alls!
Younger Elder Brooksby

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The week of exploding objects!

My watch exploded after a good 2.5 years of service, my suitcase
exploded after a solid 4 transfers and a flight from America to Japan
and the work exploded, meaning we increased our teaching pool by an
infinite amount, taking it from 0 investigators and potential
investigators to 0 investigators and 1.5 potential investigators. I'll
just let you wonder how the .5 works.

Heyo, minasan!

There was a bit of misinformation in those transfer updates last week!
We are not whitewashing the area, we are opening it! Normally that's
not too big of a deal, but we also have our own apartment! We also had
no food or supplies necessary for survival! Because of that, we also
now have almost no money! At least, no money comparatively to how we
normally start out the month, but it's gonna be tight haha

Weekly Questions!

Where would I rather live? On the Beach or in a city?
City for sure! If the beach was close to things to do, that would be
alright, but there definitely have to be people and places within the
realm of interesting and nearby things.

If I had to be sick would I rather have stomach or heart problems?
Like, seriously ill? I would prolly prefer heart problems, quite
honestly. I've found that, for me at least, it's easier to continue to
work through the pain of heart problems, 'cuz it seems to only cause
you to feel pain, but with stomach problems it kinda hits all of your
muscles and ends up making your abs and core really sore and makes it
difficult to move properly, so it takes you out longer.

If I had to choose a part of my body to lose what would it be?
My pinky toe haha. Nah but really, if it was a full on part, I would
probably want to lose my right leg's bottom section, if it was only
one part. If it had to be the full leg I'd prolly do the same. The
reason is that your hands need to be extremely dexterous, and your
head is just a bit important, but with a leg you can get mechanics for
it and you could make some pretty sweet Halloween costumes with a
missing leg haha

How many YSA are in my new ward?
Lots, but even the other elders have no idea exactly. We hung out in
their class and there were about eight of them, but in this ward, it
is way weird 'cuz it's a stake center and there are two wards that
meet in the building every Sunday, so our church starts at 1:30. That
may not seem too weird for you people in America or places similar,
but it's way trippy here and it throws off our whole Sunday schedule.
The relation to the question is that we can't accurately count because
there are two wards and often visitors and occasionally investigators.
Definitely a good problem, ne?

Can I bring a sword home for Chris?
I would love to, Chris! They are generally a bit expensive, though,
and I'm not sure how Ima fit it in my bag, but hey, if the opportunity
arises, look forward to it! It may take a while!

How is my new area? How is my new area treating me?
It's going good! We don't really even know where our area is yet,
seeing as how we lack a map, but the bits we do know seem pretty fun!

Do I know why Japan is called the land of the rising sun?
No idea. I'm sure I could tell you all something that sounded
convincing that I really just made up on the spot, but you guys have
Google access, so that doesn't work too well, ne? I thought about
asking my companion 'cuz he loves Ninja shtufts and studied it before
his mission and collected their weapons and shtufts, so he would
prolly know, but he's sleeping and I don't want to bug him.

How is Elder Brooksby the younger doing?
I'm doing great! Still bummed about leaving Hodogaya, but I know God
will let me return there one day, one way or another, so it's not
really goodbye, right?

Did I make any girls cry when I left my last area?
That is an excellent question! I can think of specific persons that I
think felt sad, but I really have no way of asking them directly haha.
I didn't catch sight of any tears as I left, but I did have a random
older member send me a message saying that everyone misses me, which I
assume means that that family misses me and by default that means
everyone else too, ne?

What is my best Japanese tale?
A tale about Japan, or a tale in Japanese? I assume you mean about
Japan, seeing as how you couldn't prolly read the Japanese haha. I
honestly don't know many stories like that beyond my own experiences
and the experiences that other missionaries have told me. I do know
some stories about some of the other religions we encounter out here,
some pretty creepy shtufts, but I'll spare you that knowledge. We pick
that stuff up because it really actually applies to what we do out
here, but regular history like that isn't as useful.

When we were introducing ourselves in church, for some reason one of
the questions they asked all of us was "Who is your favorite Disney
princess?", which I had to tell them that it's been so long and I
really didn't watch Disney a ton, so I had no idea. The best bit was
that that question was asked in priesthood.

Random Story Time!
Transfers are always a fun time because many missionaries travel
without a phone or a companion, which always worries the Zone Leaders
quite a bit, because they really don't want to lose anybody. I had
transferred  to Hodogaya through the north mission on a 1.5 hour train
ride, quite a bit longer than most, and had only been about 10 minutes
late, so when I heard that I would be transferring to Kanagawa, I
messaged the elders there and asked which was the closest station to
the apartment, and it only ended up being 30 minutes away, so I wasn't
worried in the slightest about it.
Anyways, the morning of transfers, Elder Otsuka and I head down to the
station after the other elders had already left, to grab the new
Hodogaya missionaries and show them their apartment before we left,
and on the way we stopped by a seven-eleven to grab my transfer plans
'cuz I hadn't received them yet. Then we headed up to the apartment
and we showed them in, I checked my plans for when I had to leave,
then we tried to hurry back to the station, but I ended up missing the
train I was scheduled for, so I just thought "Ah well, I remember the
name of the station that the other elders said was closest, so I'll
just get myself over there!" and then I did and nobody was at that
station, which is a bit freaky when you are in a new place with no
phone, so I tried to ask a Japanese guy if I could borrow his phone
but he said no, which was a bummer.
Then I noticed a convenience store so I went to see if it had WiFi so
I could send an email and figure out where everybody was, but for some
reason the WiFi didn't work there, and I've come to find out most
convenience store's WiFi here don't work. So I headed back to the
station and opened my transfer plans again and noticed that my
destination was actually a different station that I had almost
accidentally gone to when trying to find where I was then, so I headed
there and ended up being about 45 minutes late. It was quite the

If anyone wants anything cool, message me! There are actually some
shops here and I'm gonna work on putting together a package soon!

Younger Elder Brooksby